We have been to Ceuse (it’s been a while indeed) and Verdon (multiple times and currently I am sitting in a van in La Palud parking) but Buoux was still missing from the French trilogy. In order to complete the trilogy, we simply had to go there. The time has come at the end of March when finally the weather seemed to get a little warmer and allowed us to leave Spain.
We stocked up with the Spanish goods such as large quantities of olive oil and just slightly smaller quantities of red wine and headed to the country of baguettes. On the way to Buoux, we checked another crag called Russan but were not too impressed probably because of being spoiled by the Spanish rock.
Buoux on the other hand even exceeded our expectations. Waking up at a new place was a nice birthday present for Martynas (in addition to a chocolate cake of course). The mecca of sport climbing in the 80s, it is still a destination very much worth visiting. Even in the lower grades it has some spectacular stuff, not to mention the harder classics. Before getting to Buoux, I had in my mind that I want to try Reve de Papilon - the first 8a in France, first climbed by Marc Le Menestrel in 1983. After getting there however I changed my mind. Steep, fingery and powerful - I decided to save the fingers for hell knows what.
Even without Reve, we got to climb many many beautiful routes, the names of which I knew long before. It was a remarkable experience to get on Rose de Sables - some say the most beautiful 7a in the world, or No Man’s Land - a traverse that looks great in pictures, or lots of other classics such as Pacemaker, TCF, Dresden, the cracks of La Beda and Marabounta and the slopy Enty Prises.
Some part of our time in Buoux we got to share with Aistė and Povilas whose holidays tend to shrink over time. But the time we had, we spent to the fullest. Lots of climbing, hiking and even a visit to the ochre mines of Bruoux. Also, sneaking into their shower multiple times.
Buoux was remarkable but we yearn for more adventures and so the next destination for us in Verdon - a heaven of multi pitch climbing and a place that holds a special place in our hearts (and guts).